You are here on earth in this time and space because you have a mission, a vision that only you can do. One that requires your unique abilities and talents and gifts. A legacy that only you can fulfill. You have a vision that requires your stories, your thoughts, your desires, your energy.
Now, there are two types of missions on this planet: personal missions and global missions. Yours might be a personal mission. It might be a global mission. Either one is totally ok. There is no right or wrong answer. Both are equally important. Both are impactful and very much needed.
Although the majority of my work revolves around those with global missions, my intent for this mini guide is to speak to both because this guidebook isn’t about your mission or vision – it’s about your Legacy – which may be the same, but is probably different.
And let’s be clear – your Legacy is not just what you leave behind when you die. It’s who you ARE while you’re living. It’s the impact you make upon those whose lives you touch with your love, your presence and your dreams.
In my work with leaders and visionaries, I’ve uncovered Three Elements of Legacy which is what we are going to talk about in this mini guide:
1: YOUR HEART – who you are
2: YOUR MISSION – what you stand for
3: YOUR INFLUENCE – what you leave behind
Because the bulk of creating your legacy and embodying your vision lies in your mission, the most emphasis will be on building Element 2 – what you stand for.
Realize this guide is not a definitive book on creating legacy – simply an introduction. If you’d like to go more in depth, reach out and connect with me. I’d be happy to have a conversation with you about your needs and desires.
ELEMENT ONE: Who You Are
What you hold within your heart is truly who you are. It is you at your innermost core. The you without masks and fears and judgments. Your purest essence. And if you’re anything like me, you’ve walked through fire to get where you are now – to BE who you are now.
And although you never really stop the self-development process – because life requires growth – in your process of discovering who you really are, you will create a foundation of authenticity that remains true to you throughout your lifetime.
Your heart is the essence of who you are. Your style. Your distinction. Your virtues and your moods and your nature. It is your compass. Your direct connection to the Divine.
So, I’ve called it heart because that is where your treasure is stored. Because you are valuable and worthy and whole just by fact that you were born. It’s where your presence lies. Where your entire being resides.
Understand that you are not broken. That your soul cannot be damaged or lost or hurt in any way. The idea of brokenness is a fallacy. It’s often a fallacy that leads you down a path of self-discovery so for now, it’s essential – though there will come time when that will not be the case.
And know that whatever you are here to do in this lifetime, you are qualified by Divine Power, Authority and Endorsement to accomplish. You do not need anything else. If you get nothing else out of this guidebook, please get that.
YOU are qualified to do whatever you dream by Divine Power, Authority and Endorsement – simply because of who you are.
Because god doesn’t call the qualified; he qualifies the called.
Your heart – who you are – is the foundation that will allow you to create the framework you need to fulfill your mission on this planet. It’s critical. You cannot circumvent it or shortcut it.
Because creating your legacy means living your life according to your own rules, your own values, your own desires. The desires and visions within your heart and soul. And now is the time to tap into that truth and hear what your intuition is telling you.
You get to decide what’s real and true for you at this point of your life. YOU make the choice to BE whomever you wish. It’s your choice alone. Regardless of your background or you circumstances or your situation, you do not have to live by default.
I won’t get too deeply into intuition here but know this: your intuition is the still small voice of god, of spirit, of source within your heart. It’s the wisdom of your soul. And it’s available to you 24/7 throughout your entire life. All you need to do is get quiet enough to hear it and then listen without fail. It will never steer you wrong. If you do that, you can be, do and have anything in life that you want.
Your vision requires that you embody who you are; that you embody your mission; that you allow the innermost core of who you are – your purest essence – to emerge fully into expression so that your vision can come through you.
Understand this too: your mission and vision is not of you; it is not of your making or your doing. It comes through you, directly from the Divine as a result of your BEING. Who you are is essential to it’s expression through you.
And as such, it requires alignment. It requires you to be wholeheartedly YOU. To bring to light what is stored within you. It requires you to share your truth unapologetically.
Your heart, then, is your character, your essence, your nature, your truth. It’s about continually removing the masks, peeling back the layers and allowing your deepest self to fully emerge. No more holding back. No more hiding.
Listen, this work – being a visionary leader – is not for the feint of heart. It requires courage and boldness and openness. It requires deep levels of vulnerability, of truth, of integrity. It requires expansive levels of love and taking chances.
In fact, you know what? It requires courageous levels of self-love.
Here’s the bottom line: your mission requires a self-love so pure, so deep, so true, so expansive, so powerful that it spills out of you and lights up the whole fucking world.
And one of the most powerful questions I ask my clients when we start working together is, “Who ARE you?”
I ask them to really sit with that question, to dive deeply into it, peeling back layers as they honestly get to know themselves on a profound level.
Often that one question is incredibly life changing. It frequently opens up a pathway to self-love that you may not have known before.
So, I’d like to ask YOU that now. . .
Who ARE you? At your innermost core, the most intimate level – who are you?
Take some time to be with that question before moving onto the next chapter.
I highly recommend you journal it out and then sit in silence (meditation, if that appeals to you) and consider the question even more deeply.
Then in the next chapter, we’ll talk about the 10 anchors, or foundations, of self that I’ve identified in my work with my clients which we are often called to develop as visionaries and leaders on a mission:
Mindset; Self-Awareness; Purpose & Meaning; Knowledge; Contribution; Spirit; Energy; Courage; Attitude and Service.
Each one of these is fundamental to your vision and in the chapter on Mission, we will expand on each of them. They are the framework that you’ll need to support your vision.
Before we get to that, though, let’s talk about one other thing that relates to heart and who you are:
I almost didn’t include anything else in this guide besides what I already mentioned above, but it’s so essential, I had to come back to add it for you. It became clear to me that this guidebook would not be complete without it.
At your innermost core – the soul, the essence of who you are – is pure and unconditional love. And it is the foundation of your entire being. It is completely essential to your life and to your mission while you’re here on this earth.
Because love and only love heals all wounds. Love is the greatest healer in the entire galaxy. And love is always the answer.
When you tap into that deep love within you, the love and light that comes straight from spirit, from source, it exemplifies and amplifies everything. And when you use your love as the foundation for your being, for your service, for your creativity and your power, there is nothing that can stop you from fulfilling your dreams and desires.
Listen – we’ve been conditioned to believe that love is something you get from someone else. We’ve been conditioned to believe that love is a feeling we get when someone gives us attention and affection.
The truth is that love is not something you seek to GET from another. . . rather it is something you willingly GIVE. Freely, openly, without strings. Love is a behavior, not so much a feeling. The feeling comes from acting a certain way for those you love, not when someone acts a certain to you.
Unconditional love is loving someone at the highest, deepest levels of who you are and who they are. Regardless of mistakes. Regardless of failures. Regardless of circumstances. It is love without irritation. Love without disappointment. Love without judgement. Without condition.
Love is a gift of the heart and when you love yourself first, unconditionally, you have the strength of heart and mind to give that love to someone else.
This doesn’t mean you let people walk all over you or hurt you or abuse you. It doesn’t mean you condone harmful behaviors. That’s not love. And it’s not unconditional. True, unconditional love knows no hatred. It knows no violence. It knows no limits. It is not angry or harmful. It is pure. It is generous and kind and limitless. It is forgiving.
You know, my ex-husband and I had a very volatile relationship. We fought. We argued. We spent lots of anger on each other. Does that mean we are bad people? No, we aren’t.
What I have to come to realize is that we couldn’t be who needed to be for our relationship because we couldn’t be who we needed to be for ourselves. There were parts of me I kept hidden. Parts of who I am that I denied. Because I was afraid of losing his love. And in the end, the truth is that being open, being vulnerable, loving unconditionally was really the answer. Not hiding.
When you deny yourself – your true self – by wearing masks and not saying what you need to say and hiding your flaws and your imperfections (or what you perceive are your flaws and imperfections) the people who love you aren’t really free to love YOU. They are only loving a shell of who you are.
BEING TRUTH, BEING LIGHT, BEING LOVE requires all of who you are, all the time.
There is no time for hiding. There is no time for playing small. No time for holding anything back. Your mission on this earth requires it.
And anything you want to create, start with love.
If you want to create peace – start with love.
If you want to create honesty – start with love.
If you want to create joy – start with love.
When are you doing what you love and what you desire, your life and your talents are never wasted. Regardless of how “small” or “simple” or “insignificant” what you are doing may seem.
Doing things from a space of love is always a great and worthy endeavor. There is nothing small or insignificant about true, unconditional love.
True, unconditional love:
Moves mountains. Opens doors. Calms storms. Heals all wounds. Dissolves anything that does not look like love.
Love is the strongest force in the Universe.
And the one most worthy of our time and attention.
ELEMENT TWO: What You Stand For
You might remember in the introduction where I said there are two types of missions: personal missions and global missions. Let’s take a moment to talk about what they are.
Personal missions are missions that affect your own world – you, your family, your daily life, maybe your community.
Your calling might be to raise a family and support and nurture them into greatness. It might be to be active and involved in your community, perhaps supporting youth programs or working with young children through the library’s literacy program.
Perhaps you’re a nurse or a bus driver or a barista and your mission is to influence, love, encourage, nourish and guide those you come into contact with each day on a personal, tangible level.
If this is true for you, please do not feel like you are less than someone with a global mission or that your mission is inferior or insignificant. YOUR mission is just as important as someone whose mission is to change the world on a global scale. You directly affect the lives, attitudes and inner worlds of those you touch through your work, one-to-one. Do not discount the power of that.
Global missions are missions that affect the world at large – your community, your region, your nation and the entire planet.
As a global leader, your charge may be to speak on stage to large audiences, write influential books and articles, lead programs for youth and young adults.
Your lifework may be to impact the masses through television or radio. Perhaps through music or acting. And just like those with personal missions, your mission is to influence, love, encourage, nourish and guide those around you – even though you may not come in direct contact with many of the people you support.
And in this chapter, we’re going to focus on both types of missions as they relate to creating legacy. But really what we’re talking about in this chapter is what you stand for.
And the reason for that is because what you stand for effects your mission. In fact, what you stand for should directly reflect your mission.
For example, what I stand for is truth, love, freedom and peace. And my mission – to create a world of peace and love in One Generation – is a direct result of that.
So, what you stand for creates the framework of your vision.
At the end of the last chapter, I told you about 10 anchors that we are called to develop as leaders and visionaries with a mission and we’re going to jump briefly into each of them now so we can begin building the framework.
What you think affects everything – and I mean, EVERYTHING – else. What you think directly influences your personal world and your larger worldview. Having a strong, positive mindset will help you create what you desire. And that’s what we’re going to focus on.
So, here are seven core mindsets:
- ENDLESS POSSIBILITY. Dream big, embrace creativity and expect great results. If you can think it, if your intuition leads you to it, you CAN do it.
- PASSION FIRST. Pursue your authentic talents and deepest interests. This is the key to creating purpose and meaning.
- NOURISH CONNECTION. Cultivate harmony in relationships and empower each other.
- ACCOUNTABLE. Recognize that you are 100% responsible for your own growth and happiness.
- GRATITUDE. Seek the positives from every experience and give thanks for all there is, all you have, all you desire.
- SERVICE. Inspire, love and serve others without expectation.
- URGENCY. Harness the power of this moment and take purposeful action today.
Understand that the time is always now to create what you want.
It’s really pretty simple. When you can make these seven mindsets a part of your daily experience and follow them, you’ll notice exponential growth and expansion throughout all areas of your life and business.
They are absolutely essential to creating your vision and living your mission to your fullest potential.
Understanding your own needs, desires, feelings, habits and everything else that makes you tick – being self-aware – is important to your foundation as a visionary and leader. Especially for those of you with global missions.
Being self-aware is being mindful, conscious, informed. Being discerning. It’s about facing the truths that might be buried within you, hidden and stuffed down throughout your life in response to family, friends and society.
These are the masks you wear. And it’s time to look behind them. To remove them. Time to look in the mirror and discover YOU – the you were born to be. The YOU your soul is calling you to be.
And I’m going to throw something in here that you probably don’t associate with self- awareness – self-care – because if being self-aware is about understanding your own needs, then it should include self-care.
It’s also time to understand that you cannot put yourself last and expect to flourish. You must make time for you. Time to create boundaries around your schedule and with the people in your life. By the way – clear boundaries are loving.
Taking time for yourself may mean scheduled breaks throughout your day. It may mean a weekly manicure. Perhaps for you it’s a coffee date with a friend once a month. Maybe it’s a whole day to yourself each week. Hell, it could even be all of those! What matters is that take time for YOU in some way regularly.
Ok – I think you get the gist. Self-awareness is paramount to your mission.
PURPOSE & MEANING
One of our basic human desires is to live a life of purpose and meaning. To know that we matter, that what we do matters. And when we feel like what we’re doing makes a difference, it’s a heck of a lot easier to get up every morning and keep going even when we have experienced setbacks.
But there’s a problem – most of us don’t really know what purpose and meaning ARE. And so the question is – is my purpose innate or do I get to choose?
We are often led to believe by family, religion, society that our purpose and mission has to be some giant, grandiose thing outside of us. Something we have to discover. Or something that is predefined by god. That we are predestined towards.
So, let’s answer that question. . .
Basically speaking, the definition of purpose is:
“The reason for which something is done or created or for which something exists.”
From that definition, we can conclude that you are here on this earth right now in this time and space for a specific reason.
Now, there’s a misconception and that is that we are often led to believe we have a pre- defined purpose. That it’s built-in, either genetically or divinely encoded within us and all we have to do discover it.
Here’s what I know to be true: your purpose is directly related to your passion.
Remember a few pages back when we looked at the seven mindsets? One of them was Passion First – to pursue your authentic talents and deepest interests. And that is the clue to your purpose – something which you get to choose.
Actively following your passion and creating your purpose will bring meaning to your life. It’s when you ignore your passion that you feel deprived of meaning.
Your mission requires knowledge. Sometimes that’s inner knowledge that comes to you from your intuition, from god. And sometimes that’s external knowledge which you gain by research and education.
Whatever your mission is, part of your job of fulfilling that mission is to continually develop, hone, revise and grow your knowledge and understanding. This allows you to expand and evolve your mission – expand and evolve fully into YOU – so that your dream, your mission, can thrive and unfold with ease and grace.
No, I’m not saying you must take college classes or anything like that – unless, of course, you feel called to do so. But I am saying learning and growing is essential to your mission. It may come in the form of books, articles, seminars, online workshops, even conversations with your mentors, colleagues and friends.
Sometimes you just know something. Your intuition leads you to a new concept or a new thought. Spirit might speak to you in the form of your guides.
The important thing here is to remain open and receptive to spirit, to the guidance of your soul and of the Divine. Your knowledge and understanding is imperative to your mission.
In addition to purpose and meaning, humans often desire to make a contribution, an impact on the world. You want to do something that helps create the kind of world you want to live in. For most of us, that looks like safety, happiness and freedom. Or if you’re an American, you might say “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” 🙂
When I first became a coach, in all of the research I did with clients, I found there are two things in this world most of us really, really want. If we get to the core of our deepest desires for ourselves, our families and humanity, most people want the same two things – peace and love.
So what we do will almost always, in some way or another, lead back to that. If it doesn’t, you’ll often end up feeling unfulfilled, disappointed, envious, jealous, frustrated and/or grumpy.
But you probably have something in addition to that – the mission you bring the world. That thing you’re called to do.
Here’s something interesting – your contribution is your mission while you’re here and your legacy once you’re gone.
In my work with One Generation Peace Project, one of the questions we seek to answer is “What do I contribute?” And then “Is my contribution innate or do I get to choose?” Very similar with what we’ve discussed around purpose and meaning.
Again, it goes back to passion and your gifts and talents. What do you do best? And yet, it’s deeper than that because while your talents are generally innate, your passion is often something of your own choosing. So let’s look at it this way:
Your innate talents + greatest passion = your zone of genius
Where do your talents and your passions intersect? When you find this space of intersection, what you do with it becomes your contribution.
To put it simply – your contribution is the impact you make. And chances are, you will make an impact in a variety of ways over your lifetime as a leader and visionary.
Know this: your contribution to this planet is not defined by size or greatness. The true measurement of your contribution lies in the sincerity, honesty and authenticity of your expression.
The energy you bring defines, not only how others perceive you, but what you actually create and draw to you.
One of the things I tell my clients often is that your outcomes are determined by the energy you bring. Whether we’re talking about conversations, offers, your website – whatever. The energy you bring to it determines the outcome.
When one of my clients comes to me and says their launch isn’t going well or they aren’t getting traction on something they’ve put out into the world, one of the first things I ask them is how they were feeling when they wrote the copy for the launch or put their offer out there.
Your energy makes all the difference. And this is true for your mission, too.
Here’s a quick exercise you can do before you work on any aspect of your project or mission – whether it’s writing copy, developing seminars or workshops, hopping on the phone for a conversation with someone or anything else –
Go back to the beginning, when your vision first came to you. I’m willing to bet that at that point, your vision totally lit you up inside and out. So go back to that feeling. Close your eyes, get grounded and remember that feeling. Draw that feeling, that energy, into your body. Think about how amazing it felt, how exciting it was, how magical it felt to be in the space of conceiving this vision.
Let that energy imprint your DNA. Let it permeate every cell, every atom, every molecule of your being. And then remember that feeling. Remember that energy. Encode your vibration to that energy.
And then every time you are working on this mission, take a moment before you start work to ground into the energy you’ve created. Always work from that space.
Whether your mission is a personal mission or a global mission, it takes courage. It takes courage to be self-aware, to stand up for what you believe in. To speak your truth and be authentic. It takes courage to be unapologetic. To be wholly you.
And having the courage to bring your mission to the world is incredibly important. There is no time for hiding or holding back. No time for fear and uncertainty. The world is counting on your unique contribution to advance.
Right now, as leaders and visionaries, we are being called to raise the vibration of the planet. To affect massive, global change that will lead to the awakening of more and more lightworkers. So your role, however small it may seem to you, plays a huge part in the grand design. Like the ripple effect a stone thrown into the water creates. Small things can have big impact.
Your voice is needed. Even if it seems scary. Even if it seems inconsequential. It’s time to say what’s within your heart and soul. It’s time to share your mission and your vision with the world.
And by being willing to step into your own mission, to share your light and your truth and your message, it allows others around you to do the same.
Your spiritual practice is THE core of your mission, regardless of what your mission entails. Even if your mission is not spiritual in and of itself.
As humans, our deepest craving is for connection. Your soul craves connection with the Divine, with yourself and with others. Deep, loving connection. Heart to heart and soul to soul. And when that is missing or inadequate, it creates misalignment with source, with truth and with your mission. It creates havoc, disruption, disharmony and fear, among other things across all areas of your life including your finances, your business, and especially in your relationships.
When I’m feeling out of whack in an area of my life, that’s a big key for me to checkin with my connection to spirit and truth, especially. I ask myself if my spiritual practice has been lacking lately and if it has, I know I need to realign to that immediately.
Your mental outlook, your mood, your point of view is crucial to really doing your work in the world. It’s really difficult to be led by spirit, to have the courage and the energy to make a contribution when your attitude reflects anger, jealousy, fear, hatred and negativity.
And so it is imperative that you develop a healthy attitude. Challenge the negative thoughts when they come and look for evidence to the contrary. Seek the good within the bad – there’s always something to be learned or gained from difficult situations.
Stop comparing yourself to others. Let things go. Much of the stuff we get upset about and worry about aren’t worth the effort. Drop old resentments. Forgive.
There’s a lot of talk in the healing, coaching and spiritual worlds lately about service and in this section, I’m going to turn the common thinking on it’s head. Why? Well, because we’re in the midst of huge global shifts as well as personal shifts and we cannot get to the next level in our lives, in our businesses and in our spiritual practices if we stay with the current thinking.
So let’s talk about service. . .
What does it truly mean to be of service? What often comes to mind is sacrifice – you have to sacrifice money, wealth, ambition, maybe family, maybe even happiness in order to be of service.
And that’s unfortunate – and untrue.
Being of service is not based in lack or poverty or scarcity. There is no loss or depravity in service. Only abundance and truth and wholeness and wealth. Being of service means you’ve filled yourself with love, honesty, truth and freedom so completely, it naturally spills out of you and into those whose lives you touch, both directly and indirectly.
Being of service isn’t something you do to gain recognition. It isn’t something you do to make yourself feel better than others or above others. It’s not something you do to prove anything. It’s not about gaining anything or winning anything.
It’s about love and giving from a space of unconditional love. A space of unlimited abundance and wealth. A space of kindness and generosity and joy. Not because YOU are doing anything but because source/god/the universe is working it’s magic through you and transforming you AND those you serve with love and grace.
Service, then, is an act of love – simply because you can. Without strings or attachments. Without expectation.
And from that, you receive even more happiness. Even more love. And even more abundance, in all it’s many forms.
ELEMENT THREE: What You Leave Behind
In this last section, we’re going to dive into more than just what you leave behind. Because as you already know, your legacy isn’t just what you leave behind – it’s what you contribute while you’re still living.
So, what is influence?
The dictionary definition reads, in part: “the action or process of producing effects on the actions, behavior, opinions, etc., of another or others”
That means what you do effects those around you.
How you act, what you think, how you feel, what you say, how you say it and what you do all have an impact. Everything creates an impact. And that impact effects how others behave, what they do, what they say, how they say it and how they feel.
That’s the bottom line: Everything creates an impact.
And when you operate from that understanding, you begin to see the ripple it creates around you. More often than not, all that’s necessary to change that is a simple shift here and there – the language you use, the attitude you hold, the energy you bring.
All of the things we’ve talked about to this point, culminate here. Everything creates an impact.
So, the question is – what impact are you creating?
It’s your choice. You can make an impact that’s built on your truth, your love and who you are. But you can’t do it haphazardly or half-assed. You must cultivate a positive mindset, be self-aware, live with purpose and meaning, seek knowledge and share it, contribute something meaningful, be fully tuned in and connected to source, allow source energy to permeate your being and your vision, have courage, be mindful of your attitude and operate from a place of loving service.
When all of those are in sync, the legacy you build will be influential for years to come and long after you’re gone from this earthly plane.
If you’re interested in learning more, check out my forthcoming guidebook on The Four Stages of Visionary Leadership. If you’re on my mailing list, you’ll get notice when it’s ready for download. And if you’re not on the mailing list, what are you waiting for?
I work with leaders and visionaries who are willing to take chances on themselves and their dreams. If that’s you, I invite you schedule a free call and see how we can work together.